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ISPA Reports A Successful EXPO 2006 Show

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International Sleep Products Association (ISPA) reported that ISPA EXPO 2006, held March 1-4, 2006, in San Antonio, Texas, was one of the most rewarding events in a challenging year for ISPA. With over 180 exhibitors from 24 countries, there were many new opportunities for some 2,700 attendees from 61 countries around the world to see the industry’s very latest in machinery, components, services and technology in one convenient location. Attendees also benefited from seeing 56 new exhibitors this year representing all product and service areas. Attendee quality and buying power was up substantially despite challenges of lighter attendance and the loss of a few key suppliers. In fact, the percentage of manufacturers with buying power remained consistent with the last EXPO in Indianapolis and was up a resounding 38% over results reported for EXPO 2002 in Denver. “The EXPO gave us a solid forum on which to launch several new products.” said Vishal Malhotra, director of marketing and strategy for Foamex International Inc. “The EXPO went very well for us. This event speaks volumes for the Board of Trustees, the ISPA staff, and the industry.” “Overall, we are very pleased with the show,” said Dick Doyle, ISPA president and CEO. “Our numbers confirm what we heard from many exhibitors—while traffic flow may have been lighter than previous shows, manufacturers in attendance were highly qualified buyers.” "Atlanta Attachment recouped its entire investment in the show before 12:00 Noon on the first day of EXPO," said Elvin Price, chairman of Atlanta Attachment Co., Inc. “I was thrilled with ISPA's efforts to bring in such a large volume of manufacturer decision-makers.” Michael DeFranks, senior manager compliance & testing with Simmons Inc. said, “EXPO 2006 afforded me the opportunity to communicate with nearly all of my vendors in one location at one time. It would have taken me 2 months to schedule that many meetings." DeFranks went on further, saying, "I support ISPA EXPO, the industry's event, as it allows me a convenient and cost-effective way to network, shop and maintain industry contacts." EXPO attendees also participated in top-notch educational seminars on global business opportunities and mattress retailing. They also enjoyed Steve Rizzo, a captivating comedian featured on Showtime, Evening at The Improv, and other national shows. Rizzo kept his audience laughing while they learned how to deal with every-day stressors and embrace change in their lives during the ISPA Industry Breakfast. Many EXPO 2006 attendees also participated in a pre-conference ShopTalk on flammability and the new federal open-flame standard—the first of several events to be held on this topic this year. As an exciting way to conclude ISPA EXPO, BedTimes and Sleep Savvy hosted a unique networking fiesta for attendees and exhibitors alike, that was full of fun, food, drink, and of course, armadillo racing. “This year’s ISPA EXPO was both challenging and very, very rewarding,” said Doyle. “More than a one-dimensional trade show, programs like this fully support our mission to advance the growth and profitability of the mattress manufacturing industry.” For more information on future ISPA EXPOs and other ISPA-hosted events, such as the Industry Conference November 9-10 of this year in Orlando, Fla., visit the ISPA Web site at www.sleepproducts.org and click “Events.” Established in 1915, the International Sleep Products Association, www.sleepproducts.org is the trade organization for mattress manufacturers and their component suppliers around the world. ISPA hosts the biennial ISPA EXPO trade show and publishes BedTimes and Sleep Savvy magazines.

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